Trojan Family praises 11th USC president
After two months in office, university President C.L. Max Nikiasâ leadership and communication with students has received positive reviews from student leaders and administrative officials.
Nikias took office on Aug. 3, but will be inaugurated today as the universityâs 11th president.
âHe really cares about the experience students have at this university,â said Nehi Ogbevoen, vice president of the Undergraduate Student Government. âHe understands that we are truly here for more than a degree, but this is also where we eat, sleep, network and learn outside of the classroom.â
Ogbevoen said Nikias has taken the time to sit down with USG and discuss student concerns.
Nikias has also been receptive to graduate students, said Graduate and Professional Student Senate President Jenny Novak.
âAfter his appointment to office he called a meeting to meet with the GPSS Exec Board regarding our agenda for the upcoming year and our greatest concerns as graduate students,â Novak said. âI have been impressed by his accessibility and his enthusiasm for his new position.â
Novak said the president has supported GPSSâ goal of providing housing for first-year graduate students, along with other projects.
âWe would like to work with him to expand summer funding opportunities for Ph.D. students, as well as give graduate students more teaching opportunities on campus to make us more competitive on the job market,â she said.
Administrators said they have also felt that Nikias is an effective leader who is willing to connect with all members of the university.
âOn a personal level, his energy and enthusiasm for USC are really incredible,â said Jean Morrison, executive vice provost for academic affairs. âHe understands the DNA of the university and because of that is able to lead the university to really great new places.â
The president sponsored a welcome event for Ph.D. students and scholars that was an important occasion to speak to students, Morrison said.
âHe really gets the fundamental character of USC,â Morrison said. âWe are incredibly fortunate to have Max Nikias as our new president.â
At the beginning of his presidency, Nikias said one of his goals was to regularly connect with students by hosting afternoon teas, of which student leaders said they have enjoyed.
âHe has been more than willing to take time of his extremely busy day to sit down with us and listen to issues that we find important,â Ogbevoen said. âI love the intimate teas that he has with students, really makes us feel special. It is amazing how receptive he is with our ideas.â
Jonathan Munoz-Proulx, a senior majoring in theatre, said Nikias has been influential in many aspects of the university, from engineering to arts.
âIâm a huge fan of President Sample,â Munoz-Proulx. âI didnât think it could ever get better, but Max Nikias is doing an incredible job.â